Statute of Limitations in Ireland

Updated April 17, 2017

As with the majority of common law systems, Ireland has a statute of limitations for certain crimes and civil procedures. Ireland applies theses statutes to most crimes not considered major crimes or felonies.

Indictable Offences

For indictable offences (or those which result in a felony), Ireland has no statute of limitations. The offender can be prosecuted until the end of their life. This was established in the Criminal Justice Act of 1951.

Smaller Offenses

Smaller offencss or summary offences, unlike indictable ones, do have a statute of limitations in Ireland. As is the case in Canada, you may only be charged with a summary offence up to six months after the date of the crime. Otherwise you may not be tried or punished for it.


The recovery of contracts, mortgages and other torts is also limited by law. Efforts to pursue these contracts and debts can only go on for two years. After this, the claimant is ineligible for any further action or repayment.

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About the Author

Geoffrey St. Marie began writing professionally in 2010, with his work focusing on topics in history, culture, politics and society. He received his Bachelor of Arts in European history from Central Connecticut State University and his Master of Arts in modern European history from Brown University.